Monday, 22nd October 2007 by

This is Hamelin Pool in Shark Bay, Western Australia, and in our thumbnail you can see the kite-shaped observation jetty where visitors can observe some of the world's oldest creatures - Stromatolites.

Looking for all the world like rocks which have grown into bizarre shapes, Stromatolites are believed to have been formed by the "trapping, binding, and cementation of sedimentary grains by microorganisms, especially Cyanobacteria", and have existed on Earth for 3.4 billion years.

Don't be mistaken though - these aren't fossils. This is one of only a few places in the world where living marine Stromatolites can be found, which themselves are over 3000 years old.

Which makes these the world's oldest living creatures too.

Thanks to Stephen Jackson. Read more about Hamelin Pool and Stromatolites at Wikipedia.